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He Said/She Said

Going To Pot Or Not?
Posted by Sean McConnor & Winter Kelly on Jun 1, 2003 - 12:13:00 PM

LOS ANGELES Dear He Said She Said,

I am a single female in my mid-twenties born and raised in L.A. I have seen my entire circle of friends go through their pot-trying and smoking days. I have seen some of them go overboard and others just didn't like it. When I was 16 years old, my 21-year-old friend died of a cocaine overdose. After that, I vowed to stay completely drug-free, so drug-free that I even think twice about taking a Tylenol.

Just recently, I've had the urge to try marijuana. I went on a road trip with someone that did it the entire way. It seemed to relax him and have less effect than alcohol. We had long talks about how natural it is. Now I'm thinking it can't hurt to try it. I have been in three situations in the last month where I could try it, down to putting it up to my mouth, and I didn't do it. My friends think it's okay if I never try it, but then someone commented that my inhibitions will stop me from succeeding in other areas. Is this true? Should I face my fear and try it?

Inhibited in Laurel Canyon,
Mary Jane


It has been said that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a first step. That applies to a person who is introduced to the drug "sub-culture" that exists in our country. You noticed I said drug "sub-culture". We already have a "drug culture" proven by the hundreds of billions spent on prescription drugs and dosed out by doctors, nurses, and the like. These "professionals" follow their patients. The ones who dish out drugs in the drug "sub-culture" follow their clients, too, but in a different way.


Before we discuss that, someone who professes to like her is pressuring Mary Jane into experimenting with drugs. Whoa, Nellie. Where is her head? You don't give poison to someone you like or do you? Maybe if you want to seduce them or get them high so they will do things they don't normally do, you offer them alcohol or drugs. Mary Jane, you are suffering from peer pressure in the extreme. She might think about the relationship she is in.

Hey, don't get me wrong. I am not some "sub-culture" virgin. I have tried smoking dope a couple of times. Yeah, it changed my feelings and made me crazy and horny, but so does seeing a beautiful woman. I do not need it because I get a sugar rush from drinking a soda (that is sufficient for me). So, based on my wisdom (oh boy), don't try it, Mary Jane. Stay clean and listen to this...

I had a cousin who got hooked by accepting joints from the neighborhood ice cream vendor. He was sent to prison. He got hooked on the hard stuff. Then, he went to prison. After he got out the last time, he overdosed and is now dead. Or, how about the beautiful woman who was "persuaded" to try crack and became a slut and a whore? She lost her house and self-respect and everything because a "friend" got her hooked. Her friend the drug pusher got everything.

Yeah, Mary Jane, life is a bitch. You have to deal with many first class jerks, both female and male. Sometimes, life is so frigging difficult that when you meet that special someone you want to cling to them and do whatever they want. However, Mary Jane, your life is worth more than a passing relationship. Look at the big picture: a life with "sub-culture drugs" is a life of dependency like a clinging relationship. I never met you, but I know you can do better.


Dear Mary Jane,

What exactly do you intend to gain from trying marijuana? If you intend to try it hoping for a new habit, you just might get that. What then? You will have a habit that is not only mind-altering, but also illegal.

Oh and it's natural, you hear? Well, so are roses, but you would not go smoke a rose, would you? I love the excuse of it being natural, so it's all good. Natural does not mean you have to go smoke it.

Marijuana has several side effects. According to, some of the side effects include speeding up your breathing and blood flow, as well as speeding up the heart. The website reports that the body is taxed while under the influence of marijuana and it will speed up the aging process as well as exert the body increasing the risk of lung cancer, heart attacks and strokes. According to the NIDA (National Institute on Drug Abuse), the short term side effects include problems with memory and learning, distorted perception, problems with decision-making and problem solving, as well as loss of motor coordination.

There is great support for legalizing marijuana and extreme debate on the medical aspects of marijuana. Medical use includes controlling nausea in cancer patients to increasing the appetite in chemotherapy patients as well as HIV positive individuals. However, I am sure you would have mentioned it if you had issues with your health. You are obviously seeking this venture based on curiosity and not medical need.

Also, consider your financial position prior to trying a potentially addictive habit. According to, the current price for pot is $243 an ounce. An ounce probably lasts a long time; however, that is still some pretty expensive produce.

Despite many pot-supporters' claims, marijuana can be addictive. According to Marijuana and Medicine, Assessing the Science Base,, the proportion of users that ever become dependent on marijuana is 9 percent compared to alcohol at 15 percent.

It can affect one's motivation and energy levels. Start really looking deeper into the picture. Are your pot-smoking friends going far in life? Or do they seem stuck living paycheck to paycheck? Do they seek out their dreams and are they in high-level successful jobs? Look past the moment they are relaxed on that high to see what they are like in the big picture of life. You might find that the more, heavy-pot-smoking friends are unhappy with their position in life. You might learn that their habits, including smoking pot, are mostly to cover up their lack of happiness.

Whoever told you that your inhibitions will prevent you from succeeding is a nut. The only thing that stops people from succeeding is a lack of focus and attention towards their goal. Doing or not doing one thing will not equate with success, nor your ability to achieve it. One has nothing to do with the other.

You have waited this long, almost half your life without using pot, and so why start now? If you still really want to try it, first do some investigation and listen to people on both sides of the fence (not just the pot-supporters, but the anti-drug people as well), and make your educated decision based on what you learn. If you do decide to try it, remember it can impair your judgment and so surround yourself only with people that you trust. Also, remember that you could like it and it could be something you might have to resist later. I wish someone warned me of that before I ever tried chocolate! Good Luck!



Cliffside Malibu




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